Breakingviews

Private equity taps happy hour at Oriental Brewery

December 11, 2013

AB InBev could pay $4.1 billion to buy back the subsidiary it sold to KKR in 2009. On a back-of-the-beermat calculation OB’s private equity backers could see a 34 percent annualized return. Even if the Belgium brewer abstains, local markets may support a similar valuation.

Versace’s valuation is as full-on as its outfits

December 3, 2013

The Italian fashion house is sizing up outside investors and reckons it can triple in value in 3 years. There is real potential, because Versace is so far behind industry trends. But a big price tag for a skimpy stake alongside a powerful family? That’s a hard look to pull off.

Li Ka-shing still has what investors want

October 23, 2013

Asia’s richest man may be an octogenarian but he still knows when to buy and sell. While the listed bits of his empire show a mixed record, Li’s two prized holding companies have matched or beaten the market. That provides valuable pointers as Li readies a new batch of IPOs.

Wall Street megadeal quest reaches end of rainbow

September 1, 2013

Thousands of investment banker man-hours and a decade’s worth of lost evenings and holidays devoted to calling on Vodafone and Verizon could finally pay off. The fee pool may exceed $300 mln for the $130 bln wireless acquisition. The return on investment, though, will vary.

Fruity American M&A saga may be about to ripen

July 12, 2013

Nearly 25 years after it was carved up, Del Monte could be put back together. Along the way, the food giant became part of dealmaking lore, linked to RJR Nabisco, Polly Peck and a landmark conflicts ruling. Del Monte is almost a textbook unto itself for barbarians and bankers.

Bernanke deserves art museum spot next to Pollock

May 16, 2013

A record $495 mln Christie’s sale set new highs for the abstract expressionist and other artists. More collectors than ever have $20 mln to spend on a single work. It paints a picture of an art world indebted to the Fed chairman and his alternative asset-friendly monetary policy.

Could Silver Lake quietly be rooting for Icahn?

May 13, 2013

A half-baked leveraged recap plan is the latest salvo from the uppity billionaire in the Dell fight. If the buyout firm backing company founder Michael Dell is spooked by the swoon in PC sales, it can’t easily bail on its $24 bln bid. But Carl Icahn could bail it out instead.

PepsiCo resistance against activists looks futile

May 3, 2013

Investors with a hankering for breakups have taken stakes in the $128 bln snacks and drinks giant. A split in the businesses would be straight out of their standard playbooks. And Nelson Peltz’s success at Cadbury and interest in food biggie Mondelez suggest bigger ambitions.

CVC takes opportunistic tilt at Betfair

April 15, 2013

The buyout giant is eyeing the high-tech bookmaker. A 35 pct premium would imply a 1 bln stg bid. Betfair has had a terrible run since floating. But its luck may be about to change. A turnaround strategy is in place. Persuading key investors to fold now might be tricky.

J.C. Penney exposes inefficiency valuing CEOs

April 9, 2013

After hiring Apple whiz Ron Johnson, the struggling U.S. retailer’s equity value spiked by more than $1 bln. Less than two years later, his departure added $350 mln. Then, the return of ex-CEO Mike Ullman swiftly erased some $700 mln. Such big swings make no sense.